Mason County News
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Do You Have 45 Minutes to Spare?
Wednesday, September 12, 2012 • Posted September 12, 2012

We are so excited to be starting another school year! Mason ISD has a flourishing mentor program BUT still has many students that would benefit from the extra attention and companionship offered by a mentor. If you are considering becoming a mentor, this is a perfect time to get started…and it ONLY takes 45 minutes of your time each week!

You may be wondering what is involved in becoming a mentor. We are here to help you! We have a brief training program that provides all the information you will need to get started. This preparation includes procedures and school policies, suggestions for the first day with your student, and general information about our mentoring program. You are walked through the entire process and given a packet as a guide. What is a mentor, you ask? A mentor can be a guide, a role model, or best of all, an additional friend to our students. Mentors inspire the students to try harder and set goals, and help them develop positive self esteem. Just having someone they can regularly count on and interact with is a great motivator and confidence builder. The simple act of dedicating 45 minutes each week to this program can be a limitless addition to a child’s life.

Mentors generally come up to the school for lunch once a week during the school year. The can help their student with school work, play games, read books, play on the computer, go outside to play, or just simply chat during their weekly meeting. The students consider it a privilege to have a mentor and look forward to seeing them every week. Our mentors truly make a positive impact on our children, on our school, and on our community as a whole.

Still unsure if mentoring is for you? Here are some quotes from current and past Mason ISD mentors:

• ” I finally volunteered to be a mentor several years ago, and I’ve never regretted it one bit.”

• ”My first child was an elementary-age boy, and I stayed with him until he went into high school. Four years later, we are still good friends.”

• “Being with these children has been very special. When I’m always greeted with a big smile and a hug, I know I’m receiving a lot more that I’m giving.”• “Being around the other mentors and their children is such a joy. Making new friends and hearing all the chatter and laughter throughout the room always makes my time at school a happy and fun-filled experience.”

• “ Being a mentor takes very little time, but it makes a world of difference in the life of a child. I’m so thankful we have a mentoring program in Mason, and I’m so happy to be a part of it.”

• ”Becoming a mentor at the school has been one of the most satisfying things I do. When I started, I never imagined how much I would also benefit from the program. How often do you get the opportunity to spend your lunchtime just having pure fun? Often, other kids come over to see what we are doing and wish they had a mentor friend also.”

• ”This was a real life changing decision, and it has been a true blessing to me ever since.”

• “There is nothing more rewarding than simply being a friend to a child. To see a child’s eyes light up simply because I’m there is a feeling of awe. To know that I’ve made an enormous difference by giving that child only one hour a week is incredible. I give up nothing, and yet, the rewards are beyond measure.”

• “You too can make a huge difference in the life of a child. Remember, to the world you may be only one person, but to one person you may be the world.”

Mason is known as a town that takes care of its own. We all should be proud to live in a place that has a reputation like that. We are fortunate to live in a small community that surrounds its youth with love and support. Please consider volunteering for this remarkably worthwhile program. If you are interested in becoming a mentor or would like more information about our program, please call Shanda Schmidt at 347-1122 ext. 239 or Lisa Heath at 258-4472.

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